Nellie Zimmerman © 2018
© Nellie Zimmerman Online Portfolio © 2018
I painted this series in a playful mood. It reflects the cheerful collage of suburbia when you view it from above. It is a fun series of colourful roof-tops, moving traffic, the ubiquitous backyard pools and the greenery that symbolises our ‘Garden State’. The serious, careful intricacy of my previous style is replaced by fun and speed. This is typical of my personality: I go through phases of being extremely pedantic and organised, followed by periods of gay abandon – when I realise that the laundry really can wait for another day because now is the time to just relax and have fun. I need a balance in life…order and chaos in equal doses, never allowing one to take over completely.
This fun fast funky series has captured the interest of young art lovers and the very young at heart. Some see echoes of Gustav Klimt’s style but I would say in retrospect that my state of mind while painting these related more to Jackson Pollock - but that is all academic. None of this was in my thoughts at the time of painting.
Another fun series that grew from the ‘Suburbia’ series but combines some of the elements of the 'Red Centre' series. It reflects a transition between my many different states of mind.
The first pieces I had ever sold as Abstract art were purely experimental. They were pieces in a grid formation of different techniques. After I had sold a complete series called 'Autumn' in a South Yarra Gallery I realised I had embarked on a new phase in my evolution as an artist.
As a new mother I was up in the early hours of the morning nursing a sick baby, and of course found myself under the influence of the same fever she had. At around 5 am when the baby finally settled, I came to life and started to create 'The City Grid' series. I had decided to use the collage technique for the first time.
When 'The City Grid' piece came together I felt complete. It was a birds eye view of the city with traffic moving and lights illuminating the gorgeous Melbourne City at night, which I absolutely love. In the freedom of the strokes I found freedom from the worries and responsibilities of being a mother.
It also symbolised another type of liberation: in my early years I was trained in old school oil portraiture under the tutelage of a brilliant classical painter Joseph Edelman. In my new artistic expression I was freeing myself from the constraints of ‘technical correctness’ and the need to please the model, and my teacher. In the search to find my own expression, I rediscovered the spontaneous, carefree side of my character … and it was wild, colourful and fast. Finding this style was a personal breakthrough and the feeling was blissful release.